Wednesday, November 7, 2007

Native American Indian Heritage Month

We discussed 10 Little Indians by Sherman Alexie at the the library's book discussion group today. Only a few of us have ever even met a Native American, except between the covers of a book or via Hollywood. In his many interviews online, Alexie talks about the stereotypes most of us have have of his people, who he refers to as Indians. The stereotypes run to warriors, shamans, and nature lovers. Alexie clearly delights in colorfully widening our mental/emotional/cerebral images of Indians and who they are.

One of the book group members told us that in Canada, Indians are referred to as people of the "First Nation". I don't know which term is best, but I have had a fascination with Indians since I first read Black Elk Speaks decades ago (referred to in product descriptions as "the most famous Native American book ever written").

During some November in years past, I created a short reading list of Native American Fiction for the HCPL eBranch. My favorite writers from this list are Louise Erdrich, Susan Power, Michael Dorris and of course, Sherman Alexie.

The sun comes forth and goes down again in a circle. The moon does the same, and both are round. Even the seasons form a great circle in their changing, and always come back again to where they were. The life of a man is a circle from childhood to childhood, and so it is in everything where power moves.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

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